State v. Wier

Summarized by:

  • Court: Oregon Court of Appeals
  • Area(s) of Law: Criminal Procedure
  • Date Filed: 12-26-2013
  • Case #: A147209
  • Judge(s)/Court Below: Duncan, J. for the Court; Schuman, P.J.; Wollheim, J.
  • Full Text Opinion

Generally, a party is entitled to have a proposed jury instruction given if the instruction properly states the law applicable. However, a trial court does not err in declining to give a correct instruction that is fully covered by the trial courts other instructions.

Defendant appealed conviction of first-degree sexual abuse, third-degree sexual abuse and first-degree burglary. Defendant was indicted and was tried by a jury. On the first-degree abuse charge, the Defendant requested a special jury instruction regarding the culpable mental state of forcible compulsion. Defendant also requested a special jury instruction regarding the culpable mental state for consent on the third-degree abuse charge. The trial court declined to read both special jury instructions and the Defendant was found guilty on all counts. Defendant appealed, arguing that the trial court erred in declining to read the instructions because the State had to prove Defendant’s culpable mental state for forcible compulsion and consent. The Court agreed in regards to the first-degree abuse and held that culpable mental state applied and the State was required to prove that element. Without that instruction, the jury could convict even if the State failed to prove culpable mental state. As for the instruction regarding consent, the Court held that the trial court did not err because the instruction incorrectly stated that the State had to prove Defendant’s mental state regarding the victim’s lack of consent. Conviction for first-degree sexual abuse reversed and remanded, and remanded for sentencing.

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